Q&A #104

Teachers' Lounge Discussion: Factoring trinomials

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From: Vincent LaVergne

To: Teacher2Teacher Public Discussion
Date: 1998080411:35:26
Subject: procedure vs understanding

I've read some messages about procedures for factoring trinomials and have found them helpful. I prefer the method where students split the middle term and factor by grouping (it works for everything). My question is this: how do we get students to actually understand what factoring is? I've tried to use algebra tiles a little bit. Are there any other things you've tried which help students understand the concept itself?

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